Choosing the right printing company includes factors like paper type, size, finishing treatments, quantity, turnaround time, and so on. Not all printers offer a lot of versatility or range in what they print. Large format digital printers can produce giant banners and signage you couldn’t do on the press, for example, but might not do short run lengths cost-effectively. Look for printers that specialize in or are certified for your needs. If you only need simple items like business cards, almost any commercial printer will suffice, but more complex jobs like packaging prototypes or high-quality coffee table books require more niche providers. Think both about your immediate needs and anything you expect to add to your project list in the coming years as your business grows.
Assess quality level and consistency
Commercial printers vary widely in the level of quality and consistency they deliver. Low-end printers tend to have older equipment, minimal quality control standards, and less seasoned staff. This often results in quality inconsistency from one job to the next, color matching issues, and content print errors or typos that slip through the proofing process. Higher-end printers invest in the latest technology, have accredited certifications and quality assurance processes, perform equipment maintenance and calibration on a strict schedule, and retain highly experienced staff. Review sample books showing work similar to yours to look for sharp detailed printed output free from issues like banding that indicate inferior equipment. Erratic or low quality is an expensive problem to have for items that represent and market your brand.
Evaluate turnaround time
Fast turnarounds and print-on-demand capability are imperative for certain products like real estate booklets that need to be timely to market demand. If the printer you choose struggles to complete jobs on schedule, it negatively impacts sales, events, and other business initiatives. During your search process, look into the production schedules promised as well as how they handle managing due dates with softer constraints. Can they expedite or reschedule jobs if needed last minute, and what service charges or issues could this cause? A responsive service team and project managers who proactively communicate are also key, so you plan accordingly if delays arise.
Don’t overlook price considerations
Naturally budget is always a concern, but fixating too heavily on cost-cutting for printing often produces a false economy. That ultra-low-cost printer using outdated technology and inferior papers may look like a steal until the final product has consistency issues, color inaccuracies lacks the sharpness and vibrancy expected for quality collateral, and results in complaints from prospects used to industry-leading materials typically distributed by your competitors. The longer shelf life and audience impact of a superior print job often offset higher initial staten island printing costs. Many commercial printers also offer specials and discounts, so be sure to inquire about options that pull pricing into a more reasonable range. Some include free design assistance and mailing services that add up to big-budget relief throughout a campaign.